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Structural Design I

Timber and Steel

Engr. Gabriel Gamana

1.0 Introduction
2.0 Tension Members
3.0 Compression Members
Table of Contents 4.0 Beams
5.0 Beam-Columns
6.0 Connections

1.1 Structural Design
1.2 Building Codes
1.0 1.3 Design Specifications
1.4 Structural Steel
Introduction 1.5 Design Philosophies
1.6 Advantages of Structural Steel
1.7 Disadvantages of Structural Steel

1.1 Structural Design

1.1 Structural Design
• In most cases the functional design, including the
establishment of the number of stories and the floor plan, will
have been done by an architect, and the structural engineer
must work within the constraints imposed by this design.
• Ideally, the engineer and architect will collaborate throughout
the design process to complete the project in an efficient
manner. In effect, however, the design can be summed up as
• The architect decides how the building should look; the
engineer must make sure that it doesn’t fall down. Although
this distinction is an oversimplification, it affirms the first
priority of the structural engineer: safety. Other important
considerations include serviceability (how well the structure
performs in terms of appearance and deflection) and

1.1 Structural Design

An economical structure requires an efficient use of materials
and construction labor. Although this objective can usually be
accomplished by a design that requires a minimum amount of
material, savings can often be realized by using more material if
it results in a simpler, more easily constructed project. In fact,
materials account for a relatively small portion of the cost of a
typical steel structure as compared with labor and other costs.

1.2 Building Codes
• Buildings must be designed and constructed according to the
provisions of a building code, which is a legal document
containing requirements related to such things as structural
safety, fire safety, plumbing, ventilation, and accessibility to
the physically disabled.
• A building code has the force of law and is administered by a
governmental entity such as a city, a county, or, for some
large metropolitan areas, a consolidated government.
• Building codes do not give design procedures, but they do
specify the design requirements and constraints that must be
satisfied. Of particular importance to the structural engineer is
the prescription of minimum live loads for buildings. Although
the engineer is encouraged to investigate the actual loading
conditions and attempt to determine realistic values, the
structure must be able to support these specified minimum

1.2 Building Codes

1.3 Design Specifications
• In contrast to building codes, design specifications give more
specific guidance for the design of structural members and
their connections. They present the guidelines and criteria
that enable a structural engineer to achieve the objectives
mandated by a building code.
• Design specifications represent what is considered to be
good engineering practice based on the latest research.
They are periodically revised and updated by the issuance of
supplements or completely new editions. As with model
building codes, design specifications are written in a legal
format by nonprofit organizations. They have no legal
standing on their own, but by presenting design criteria and
limits in the form of legal mandates and prohibitions, they can
easily be adopted, by reference, as part of a building code.

1.3 Design Specifications


1.4 Structural Steel
Structural steel is a category of steel used for making
construction materials in a variety of shapes. Many structural
steel shapes take the form of an elongated beam having a
profile of a specific cross section. Structural steel shapes, sizes,
chemical composition, mechanical properties such as strengths,
storage practices, etc., are regulated by standards in most
industrialized countries.


1.4 Structural Steel

The various properties of structural steel, including strength and
ductility, are determined by its chemical composition. Steel is an
alloy, its principal component being iron. Another component of
all structural steels, although in much smaller amounts, is
carbon, which contributes to strength but reduces ductility. Other
components of some grades of steel include copper,
manganese, nickel, chromium, molybdenum, and silicon.
Structural steels can be grouped according to their composition
as follows.
1. Plain carbon steels: mostly iron and carbon, with less than
1% carbon
2. Low-alloy steels: iron and carbon plus other components
(usually less than 5%). The additional components are
primarily for increasing strength, which is accomplished at
the expense of a reduction in ductility.

1.4 Structural Steel
3. High-alloy or specialty steels: similar in composition to the
low-alloy steels but with a higher percentage of the
components added to iron and carbon. These steels are
higher in strength than the plain carbon steels and also have
some special quality, such as resistance to corrosion.


1.4 Structural Steel

1.4.1 Standard Cross-Sectional Shapes
Most often, selection will entail choosing a standard cross-
sectional shape that is widely available rather than requiring the
fabrication of a shape with unique dimensions and properties.
The selection of an “off-the-shelf ” item will almost always be the
most economical choice, even if it means using slightly more


1.5 Design Philosophies
• As discussed earlier, the design of a structural member entails
the selection of a cross section that will safely and
economically resist the applied loads. Economy usually
means minimum weight—that is, the minimum amount of
• This amount corresponds to the cross section with the
smallest weight per foot, which is the one with the smallest
cross-sectional area. Although other considerations, such as
ease of construction, may ultimately affect the choice of
member size, the process begins with the selection of the
lightest cross-sectional shape that will do the job. Having
established this objective, the engineer must decide how to do
it safely,


1.5 Design Philosophies

1.5.1 Allowable Strength Design (ASD)
• In allowable strength design (ASD), a member is selected that
has cross-sectional properties such as area and moment of
inertia that are large enough to prevent the maximum applied
axial force, shear, or bending moment from exceeding an
allowable, or permissible, value. This allowable value is
obtained by dividing the nominal, or theoretical, strength by a
factor of safety.
• This approach is called allowable stress design. The
allowable stress will be in the elastic range of the material.
This approach to design is also called elastic design or
working stress design. Working stresses are those resulting
from the working loads, which are the applied loads. Working
loads are also known as service loads.

1.5 Design Philosophies
1.5.2 Load and Resistance Factor Design (LRFD)
• Load and resistance factor design (LRFD) is similar to plastic
design in that strength, or the failure condition, is considered.
Load factors are applied to the service loads, and a member
is selected that will have enough strength to resist the
factored loads. In addition, the theoretical strength of the
member is reduced by the application of a resistance factor
• Plastic design is based on a consideration of failure conditions
rather than working load conditions. A member is selected by
using the criterion that the structure will fail at a load
substantially higher than the working load. Failure in this
context means either collapse or extremely large
deformations. The term plastic is used because, at failure,
parts of the member will be subjected to very large strains,
large enough to put the member into the plastic range.

1.5 Design Philosophies

When the entire cross section becomes plastic at enough
locations, “plastic hinges” will form at those locations, creating a
collapse mechanism. As the actual loads will be less than the
failure loads by a factor of safety known as the load factor,
members designed this way are not unsafe, despite being
designed based on what happens at failure.


1.6 Advantages of Structural Steel
The assumption of the perfection of this metal, perhaps the most
versatile of the structure materials, would appear to be even
more reasonable when its great strength, light weight, ease of
fabrication and many other desirable properties are considered.
1. High Strength
2. Uniformity
3. Elasticity
4. Permanence
5. Ductility
6. Toughness


1.7 Disadvantages of Structural Steel

In general, steel has the following disadvantages
1. Corrosion
2. Fireproofing Cost
3. Susceptibility to Buckling
4. Fatigue
5. Brittle Fracture